Hi, I’m Sassy, The Aphantasia Coach and founder of The Aphantasia Coaching Academy.
In 2015 I read a Facebook post which blew my mind!
The post was about a man who had woken up from an operation to find that he had completely lost the ability to visualise. It described how he could no longer create images in his minds eye or imagine the rich, moving, visual realms that he had been able to, before his operation.
At this point my first thought was "What?!? He could actually create images in his mind beforehand?"
Up to that point I had always thought that visualisation was just a concept.
With that one post, I discovered that I have a neurological condition called Aphantasia
Discovering that I have aphantasia was shocking, but as the shock wore off I realised that I was also sad, angry and more than a little confused.
Why had I never heard of this before?
Why is it that other people get to close their eyes see the faces of their loved ones whenever they want and I don't?
Why do other people get to visually re-live wonderful past events and I don't?
Confusion led to understanding as I started to realise why I had always struggled with coaching practices which centred around visualisation.
Why guided meditations frustated me and made me more stressed than I was when I started.
The more I researched aphantasia, the more things started to fall in to place. I discovered that I also have SDAM (Severely Deficient Autobiographical Memory), anauralia (a silent mind), alexithymia and that I am unable to access any of my internal senses.
With this new found understanding of aphantasia came the realisation that some of the practices so widely used in all types of coaching and other health, wellbeing and personal growth spaces are not effective for me.
Especially practices which include visualisation, accessing negative thoughts, or using the past to identify patterns of behaviour.
I began to notice all of the barriers there had been to my own personal growth and why I started but often never finished coaching programmes. Why I would give up, thinking that I just didn't get it!
I realised that my inability to look backwards or 'see' my future was preventing me from being able to fully benefit from so many therapeutic and personal growth practices.
As a qualified coach, I know just how powerful these practices & techniques can be for those who can visualise and yet those results were blocked to me.
And if they were blocked to me, that meant that they must be blocked to other people like me.
I knew I had to do something so that people like me could get the same transformational results from coaching.
So I created The Aphantasia Coaching Academy
I have made it my mission to support those like me by teaching other coaches how to work with neurodivergent clients.
A person-centred approach
To always have your best interests at heart. Your personal and professional growth is at the centre of everything I do.
To continue to learn and grow so that I can deliver the most up to date methods.
An advocate for Neurodivergent people
To continue to raise awareness of aphantasia, and other neurodivergent conditions. To teach other professionals how to adapt to support their neurodivergent clients.
"I am passionate about creating a space for neurodivergent people to experience the transformative power of coaching"
Member of the the Institute of Leadership & Management.
My qualifications include:
Level 5 Certificate Leadership & Management.
Level 5 Coaching & Mentoring Diploma
Diploma in Women's Health
Level 2 Counselling Skills
The Aphantasia Academy is a Member of the CPD Certification Service and registered CPD provider.